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by : BTF

As I Wander...

Living in tropical Malaysia, we tend to take the hot humid weather, thundery rainstorms and the spectrum of wild evergreen plants as a given.

Recently, I noticed more exotic plants making its way into landscaped home gardens, recreational parks, frontages of shopping malls and
commercial buildings.

Along kerb sides of residential streets and busy motorways, palms, trees and flowering plants make pleasant and interesting fringes.

This is a record of the various species "as I see it" for I am in awe of palms. Hence, my premise for this blog is that the global garden,
i.e. every physical garden (tended or untended), becomes a part of my, simply said, cyber palm garden. ;-)

Please feel free to share your thoughts or comments.

Thank you for visiting!

ShaShinKi - Malaysia's Online Camera Shop!

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Date Palm

Botanical Name : Phoenix dactylifera

The date palm is native to North Africa. According to records, it is also one of the earliest palm species to be cultivated by humans and for the people of North Africa and the Middle East, their sweet edible fruits are a nutritious food source.  This species is known as the only 'true' date palm and is cultivated commercially for its delicious fruits.
Photo credit : Annie K
The palm is multi-stemmed when young and its surrounding suckers be removed to maintain a solitary trunk for its successful development.  Fading leaf scars eventually create a diamond shaped pattern on its trunk. The greyish-green pinnate fronds are made up of leaflets arranged in a V-formation.  However, it should be noted that the lower petioles are made up of sharp spines 3-4in long.

Photo credit : Annie K

Photo credit : Annie K
The oblong fruits are approximately 1.5in long.  They are formed from the flowers of the female plant.

Sun dried dates are readily available throughout the year in Malaysia.  During the Muslim fasting month, some shops were also selling the seasonally imported fresh fruits.
dried sweet dates
The pointed seeds of the dates (fresh or dried) grow easily when put into soil (ground).  It is likely to be productive and bearing fruits at 7-10years provided there is a male plant in the vicinity!

Note : Palm photos courtesy of Annie K.who planted this specimen, now 2years young, from a seed (fresh).  

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